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Almost half of Aussie adults own a smartphone. And boy, are we using it.

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Take-up of smartphones soared to 8.67 million devices from May ’11- 2012, according to the Australian Communications and Media Authority – a whopping 104 per cent rise.

9.2 million of us access the Internet via our iPhone, Android (now the most popular OS) or other smartphone and 4.4 m via tablet during Dec 11- May 12.

One in four Aussie adults (4.37m) use a tablet such as an iPad, and usage is highest among the 18-54 age group.

The number of mobile internet subscribers now stands at 22.1 m at June 2012 – almost the number of our entire population – meaning some of us have more than one subscription and/or multiple devices.

ACMA Chairman, Chris Chapman, called the massive take up of smarties as “extraordinary” and “underlines the critical importance of mobile and 4G services.”

He also called for “high speed mobile broadband, ‘fit for purpose’ spectrum frameworks and availability, and efficient infrastructure are the new essential.”

This comes as the government looks set to soon auction off its 4G spectrum, although its asking very high prices from telcos.

A massive 4.45 million smartphone users downloaded an app during June last.

But Aussie smartphone users are not just fiddling around on apps, they are also more likely to buy goods online, access social networking sites and download audio or video content than other device owners.

 

Continued rollout of mobile network upgrades, growth in 4G coverage and the increased use of WiFi hotspots are the key drivers of increasing smartphone ownership, ACMA says, somthing which Telstra, Optus and Co are none too aware.

And we are also hotspotting more with our smart devices, the report notes over 2 million Australians used a WiFi hotspot, up 32%, during the June quarter 2012 .

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